Arts & Culture Real Estate

St. Leonard’s Church Embarks on Major Renovation

Saint Leonard Church, Boston’s North End

In a letter to parishioners, Fr. Antonio Nardoianni, announced the most extensive, and expensive, renovation of the Saint Leonard Church since it was built in the late 1800’s. The preliminary estimate for repairs is “in the order of seven figures,” according to the parish.

The restoration is made urgent by the continuous deterioration of the building.  In consultation with the Archdiocese of Boston an architect has already been contracted and is now working to determine the extension of the intervention that the church requires. The roof, storm windows and frames, the repointing of the bricks on the outside, the electric system, heat, PA system, the stucco, the upper stained glass windows, painting, floor and pews inside; the refurbishing of the two sacristies, etc., are all among the major expenses of this complex project.

The church has started a a campaign to raise funds, called “A Special Appeal.”

Centrally located at the corner of Hanover and Prince Streets, St. Leonard Church was the first Roman Catholic church built by Italian immigrants in America. See for more information.

11 Replies to “St. Leonard’s Church Embarks on Major Renovation

  1. One of the most beautiful churches in Boston, i went to Saint Anthonys school and this church was associated with the school, as kids we had to attend the 9 0 clock mass downstairs which God forgive me was dark, gloomy and to a little kid scary, when they did have massess for us upstairs it was a big deal because it was so beautiful with the stain glass windows, painted ceilings at the altar and magnificent marble collums, upstairs was always used for first communions , confirmations, weddings , funerals im glad they use it now, when i go to the north end the first thing i do is stop at st Leonard. , just sit , talk to god and look at how beautiful this church is and think of all the happy memories i have growing up in the north end and going to saint anthonys school, Oh please dont paint those collums again let the natural marble shine on,

  2. St. leonard’s is a beautiful church but it was always expensive to maintain. I remember many years ago when the dome had to be repaired and the cost was beyond belief.
    Why not just close St. Leonard’s and consolidate all Masses and church functions in Sacred Heart? I think it’s a nicer church, it needs few repairs and it has a functioning lower church. Just a thought and I’m sure your readers will have strong opinions about this.

    1. St. Leonard’s is the church that my grandparents, and most Italians attended. It’s where my parents were married, and buried from. My brother and I went to St. Mary’s Church because that’s where we went to school. Now, both of them are gone. I think St. Leonard’s should be repaired and maintained for it’s beauty and it’s history. Whenever I go back to the North End, I stop in to say a prayer. It’s like an old friend who is always there to welcome you. We have a treasure here. Let’s keep it!

    2. St. Leonard’s church should be considered a historical landmark and restored to it’s original glory. Perhaps the Archdiocese of Boston and the Vatican could foot the bill for this project. It would be a wonderful tribute to all of the immigrants who built and sustained the church for so many years. I, as so many others, am one of those immigrants. My older family members poured their hearts and souls and their money into this beautiful church. St. Leonard’s was a second home to most of these immigrants, a piece of the heritage they left behind in Italy. This church needs to be preserved.

    1. and kept a beautiful garden there. omg those flowers were beautiful.. I think that’s how they actually got the name peace garden because of him

      1. It was Fr. Cherubino whose gardening expertise followed Bro. Gerard and brought it to an even higher level of elegance. Fr. Kenneth named it the Peace Garden in the 60’s.

  3. What an extraordinary time we are living in! First, Pope Francis and his realistic vision for the future of the Roman Catholic Church–now this announcement from Fr. Nardoianni. Although built by Italian immigrants the iconic St. Leonard’s Church is a tribute to all new Americans (proud immigrants) of all nationalities.

  4. My eight grade class and the whole of St. Anthony’s School raised money for the Peace Garden sigh back in 1973! So happy to keep the church up to par!

  5. I Remember Brother Gerard, was married by Fr. Cherubino, and return to St Leonards whenever in the Nort End. I Adore the statue of St. Padre Pio in the Peace Garden, made possible by another Italian born American, Anna Sirignano and friends. Our historical past must be maintained for the future.

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